Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Meet With Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle Ahead of Invictus Games

Harry and Markle made a pit stop in the UK before heading off to The Netherlands.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle made a pit stop in the U.K. to visit Queen Elizabeth II, ET has confirmed.

A spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex tells ET the couple visited Her Majesty on Thursday at Windsor Castle "as we previously said he hoped to do." The spokesperson added Harry and Meghan stopped by on their way to the Netherlands to attend the 2022 Invictus Games. It's unclear if their children -- Archie, 2, and 10-month-old Lilibet -- were in tow.

Nevertheless, that Harry and Meghan touched down in London to visit the queen is significant news considering it marked their first visit to the U.K. since the couple stepped down from their roles as senior members of the royal family in 2020.

The visit comes on the heels of Harry not attending the service of thanksgiving honoring his late grandfather, Prince Philip, at Westminster Abbey on March 29. Philip died in April 2021 at age 99.

A spokesperson for Harry said at the time that, while the duke would not be returning to the U.K. in late March, he "hopes to visit his grandmother [Queen Elizabeth] as soon as possible." That day turned out to be Thursday.

The visit also comes nearly two months after Harry spoke out about safety concerns in his home country. In January, Harry threatened to take legal action against a Home Office decision that prevents him from funding private security for his family in the U.K. 

After they moved to the United States in 2020, Harry and Meghan, in addition to losing their royal status, also lost their taxpayer-funded police protection

In any event, Harry and Meghan are soon headed to The Hague, Netherlands, site of the 2022 Invictus Games. The Invictus Games, slated to run from April 16-22, is a special event for the couple. The international sporting event gives wounded, sick or injured servicemen and women a chance to compete in various sporting activities and was founded by the Duke of Sussex. In fact, Meghan and Harry made their public debut as a couple during the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto.

The 2022 Invictus Games is the first time that the ceremony is being held since it was canceled in 2020 due to the global pandemic. The games were previously held in London, Orlando, Toronto and Sydney. The 2023 games are slated for Düsseldorf, Germany.